Monday, October 30, 2017

Iceland rolls its corrupt government

Icelanders went to the polls for the second time in a year over the weekend, and robbed their corrupt government of its majority:

Iceland’s ruling centre-right parties have lost their majority after a tight election that could usher in only the second left-of-centre government in the country’s history as an independent nation.

With all votes counted after the Nordic island’s second snap poll in a year, the conservative Independence party of the scandal-plagued outgoing prime minister, Bjarni Benediktsson, was on course to remain parliament’s largest.

But it lost five of of its 21 seats in the 63-member Althing, potentially paving the way for its main opponent, the Left-Green Movement headed by Katrín Jakobsdóttir, to form a left-leaning coalition with three or more other parties.

All the governing parties lost seats, and one of them, Bright Future, was eliminated entirely, being reduced to just 1.2% of the vote. Despie that, 25% of Icelanders till voted for a party whose leader corruptly used government information to profit from bank nationalisation. That's appalling.

Political fragmentation means that any government is going to require the cooperation of at least four parties, and maybe even more than that. But its doable, and hopefully Iceland will have a new, non-corrupt government soon.